Many years ago, the chairman of a very successful manufacturing company, during one of our occasional chats, told me this very interesting story.
The company was going through a massive expansion plan as more and more development firms were looking into fast-track construction methods to try and satisfy the governments call for more houses.
Sound familiar…well this was in the early 1970s.
As a specialist timber-frame manufacturer, they were being approached by a large number of developers and as a result increased their production of panelled units considerably. There was literally thousands of panels being manufactured weekly with lorry loads of components leaving their yard on a daily basis.
But concern started to be raised by management that some of the practices on one particular site were not being followed correctly, which the company knew that left unchecked would result in the structural integrity of the completed houses being severely undermined.
A decision was taken to transfer someone from the factory to site to manage the build process and they selected one of the best men they had; someone who had been instrumental in the rapid growth of the business. There was nothing he didn’t know about timber-frame manufacturing and therefore was deemed to be the best man for this task.
It was a disaster.
With no experience of construction site processes…and pressures, the individual ended up having a nervous breakdown….when he finally returned to work he’d lost much of his enthusiasm and energy and never regained his management role…
Square pegs in round holes.
For most of us the work-place dominates our lives and therefore it is essential for our well-being that management has a much better understanding of how the human mind works because if they don’t that many GOOD men and women will fall by the way side due to poor management decisions.
Managing a work force is about managing ‘human computers’…WE ARE ALL DIFFERENT. Put 100 individuals in a room and tell a joke; 50% will laugh and 50% will be offended. Same words…different programmes.
With millions of man hours being lost to industry through STRESS related illnesses surely it is time for ‘corporates’ to start, not just giving lip service to this appalling treatment of their work-force…but being forced to put some of their huge profits into a national programme of re-education. Look we all have financial commitments and therefore need a job but at what expense to our health and well-being are we selling out to the money men.
21st century man is being bombarded with negativities about self, through his own perception of failure; fuelled by the successes he witnesses or the aggressive remarks and reactions by others. Therefore in an attempt to elevate his profile but against internal struggles, tens of thousands of individuals find themselves accepting additional work-place responsibilities, yes for the money, but more in the hope that it will improve the quality of their lives…
But as the case of the factory manager demonstrates, someone programmed to work an environment that allowed him to flourish, when relocated to a site environment, like a fish out of water, it nearly destroyed him…
So yes I believe that piss-poor management is responsible for STRESS in the work-place and unless this matter, through platforms like MANSTRESS, is discussed and addressed then the appalling statistics will just keep on increasing.
In closing if piss-poor management is affecting your health then for Christ sake STOP now and start planning changes to your career path…and life.
Remember taking back control of your life can have a massive positive impact on your well-being and those around you providing of course that you are prepared to make certain financial compromises that might be required when making such changes…to change a career path is not a failure continuing to work at something that is damaging your health most certainly is…
If you have a story about how piss poor management affected your life…please share it.
I noticed when visiting a construction site recently that the Health and Safety Executive had started a STRESS reduction campaign…